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Gazprom Neft shareholders elect new board of directors


MOSCOW, June 22 (RIA Novosti) - Shareholders of oil company Gazprom Neft, renamed from Sibneft in May, elected a new board of directors at an annual meeting Thursday.

The board of directors now comprises seven executives from energy giant Gazprom [RTS: GAZP], which owns 75.68% of shares in Gazprom Neft, and two representatives of beleaguered oil company Yukos [RTS: YUKO], which holds a 20% stake in the company.

Yukos, once Russia's major independent oil producer but now facing heavy debts and tax arrears, is reportedly considering selling its stake in Gazprom Neft, with Gazprom and state-controlled oil company Rosneft seen as likely buyers.

Rosneft, which plans an IPO in July, bought Yukos' main production unit Yuganskneftegaz in December 2004 via a government organized firesale ostensibly to clear Yukos' back taxes. On June 20, it signed a deal with China's Sinopec Group to buy a 51% stake in regional Russian oil producer Udmurtneft.

By acquiring the stake, Gazprom would receive complete control of tycoon Roman Abramovich's former company, which has charter capital of 7,586,000,079 rubles ($280.79mln).

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